Domestic Violence Awareness

We live in turbulent times, but this is not a new thing. Women have been suffering abuse for as long asDSCN1175 women and men have been getting together and having children.

Life turns around and we don’t even know how. One day we are fine, we have all our cards in our hands, we believe the rest of our lives will be just like they were up to now. But suddenly there is a turn and then other, and even another one, and then we feel lost. We don’t know what to do any more, what was right is left and what we used to like is hurting us. The truth is that the only thing that we can trust in life is that it will change, but we forget. We plan the rest of our lives like if we knew what lies ahead, but we are shown, time and time again that we should not take anything for granted.

And oh well, we find out that life changes and that we have to adapt, but how do we make mayor changes when we are not ready, because we never are. We get disoriented as we think that it could not happen to us, our spouse will not turn on us, our lives are guaranteed to stay as we planed them. . Those things happen to other people, not us. We are too full of ourselves, not really understanding that we are at the mercy of the elements.

And one month turns in to another and a year in to the next, all this can go for a long time before we realize what is going on. Finally there will be a catharsis, a climax that turns the tables. For many women is the first time that the abuse turns in to violence, for others is their family when they finally find out, and still for others is fear for their children, that they may get hurt, that they may grow up to find all this as natural or heavily traumatized.

Women get out of terrible situations and get ahead; sometimes it takes years to get their heads above the water once again. It is not an easy task, to deal with the divorce, the loneliness and the prospect of a future without the person that one day, not too long ago, was the center of their lives. And then is the matter of dealing with a family of by themselves, with the expenses and the job, the problems, children and day care; but most of all the shame. Many women have a really hard time dealing with the fact that their spouses abused them, that they have a failed marriage. What are their families going to think about them? How could their judgment be so skew?

The truth is that none of that is needed. There are myriads of reasons why people abuse others, and none of them are the fault of the abused, but still, that is part of the mourning, part of the suffering that the victim feels, once again being victimized.

Fortunately there are more and more women getting ahead with their lives after traumatic experiences, as there is more awareness, more services and more education about the matter. October is the month for domestic violence awareness, one of the many ways that we as a society have placed for people’s education, for this problem to go away, so no more women need to go through the anguish of not knowing what to do and the shame of having to undo their lives so they can keep on living, and to honor this social awareness effort we like to contribute with a program dedicated to all the women that have suffered and are suffering at the hands of their spouses.

I don’t want anybody to think that I believe that all man are abusers, not by far, but some are and they do a lot of damage, to their spouses, their children and themselves.  And I don’t want to indicate that it is only men that abuse women. Some women abuse men as well. Abuse is not only physical violence; it can take many forms, including sexual abuse, verbal abuse, coercion and control. 


To give help us understand the issue and make us further conscientious of the matter we have invited Rhachelle Nicol, a brave woman that went through really hard times to come the other way with flying colors. After she won her own personal battles,  feeling that she had to help others Rhachelle is currently working on a project to bring awareness, education and support to women in trouble.

Please join us this coming Tuesday October 22nd at 8 PM PST to welcome Rhacelle Nicole to our show, you will be surprised and delighted with this highly energetic women, we are delighted to have her with us.


It Could Happen To You Too

What kind of world are we living in when we allow injustice to hit the basic unit of our society? When we beautiful womenallow our families to be damaged by improper handling of unfairness? What kind of people are we to call ourselves civilized when we don’t take care of our own, let them go in to disgrace and don’t look back?

The IRP6 case is a fine example of this problem. Here we have 6 families destroyed by bureaucratic failure. By human error or negligence, I really don’t know, but the result is that this families are going through trying times and nobody is helping them. Yes, of course, their circle, friends and church members are supportive, but society is not. No major networks are making waves; no bureaucratic entity is supporting them and listening to their crying. And worst of all, most of us think that this is not our problem, we are not involved in this mess, how could we have something to do with it? Mostly, what can we do if bigger and better people are doing nothing about it? That is a terrible problem in society today, even worse than the injustice going on. The fact is that in today’s society we are so individualistic, so egotistic that unless a problem directly affects us, we want nothing to do with it.

Men being convicted unjustly bring a lot of issues to the table, to our society and truly affect each and every one of us. Not only the men get imprisoned, so do their families. Women and children are left behind, still free to come and go, but only relatively. They don’t have the right to be with their loved one, they don’t have the right to keep the team they started when they got married, they don’t have the right to have the financial and emotional support they were counting on when they decided to have a life in common with these men.

The whole family suffers a loss; they all get affected by this judgment in more ways than one. Las week we talked with Tasha Harper about what was happening to her children, how all this is affecting them and how they cope with the loss, and that is hard enough. But children are not the only ones getting affected. The whole family’s  life changes, the relationships, the values, quality time, priorities. The men are loosing the best years of their lives behind bars, and they don’t really know why, they didn’t do anything; their wives are loosing their lives while looking at them suffer, missing them, feeling the pain and the brunt of reality, suffering themselves as much as if they were imprisoned, if not more, as their situation is aggravated by abandonment and loneliness.

The wives go home to an empty living room, to sad and troubled children, to a life of financial hardships. They are the only breadwinners now, with no child support and no widow pension. They are left hanging in limbo, being punished for being, for something that neither them nor their husband’s did, doing a sentence for a crime that is not committed, or even defined. They are paying for injustice and that is all;, they are paying for us all; for all of us turning our backs on their reality, for all society living a life of disinterest to our fellow men and women. It is time that we stand up for one another, that we denounce injustice. We have a voice and we have to use it. We cannot look at this problem and decide that it is nothing to us; it can happen to all of us. No matter what we stand in life right now, it can change really fast.

To tell us about how her life was affected by the changes brought about through terrible events we have invited Tesia Barnes, Married to Kendrick Barnes, another one of the IRP6 wrongly convicted men. Please join us on giving Tesia a very warm welcome, being a quiet woman, Tesia is making a big effort to come and talk to us about her experience, and we truly appreciate her willingness to share with us her testimony.

We will be on air, Tuesday September 24th, at 8 PM PST

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Lady Justice

Ethel is fantastic; she has very clear ideas about what justice is. She jail doorhas very clear concept of who her friends are and she fights for them with tooth and nail. She is a bright single-minded lady from Colorado and she has a mission.

She is a church going woman, who loves her pastor and loves the parishioners like she loves her own family. She believes in these men because she knows them since they were children, and she has seen them grow up to become decent, hard-working men. And for sure she is not going to stand there, waiting for something to happen; she is making it happen. She is working for it, going to every gathering, every event that she can think of that will render more information, more support, more results. She has written to politicians and organizations, she gathers with friends and comes up with plans, she knocks in all the doors; she is talking to the world. And as she says, not just for this men, but for all of us, as this could happen to anyone.

Ethel came and told us the story of her friends. Six men put in prison, condemned to 17 years for no apparent reason. But there are reasons, and she let us know. She gave her opinion about who she thinks is involved in this fiasco, and she left it at that, for now. So far she has not physical evidence of what happened, but she will get it; actions speak louder than words, and they all knew who was getting on their way, who has interests on getting this men out of their way, who may have a problem with these men being successful.

Her main concerns now are the wives, how they are surviving the trauma, carrying on with family life. And the children, how are they dealing with the absence, with the pain, with the shame. She mentioned them, as an introduction to all of us about the collateral victims, the problem caused by the families and friends But really, there was not enough time in the show to bring the whole issue to light. We solved that problem though. We talked to Ethel and she will be coming back next week with one of the ladies. They will be in the show to further illustrate the point of the consequences of injustice in American families and American children.

Making the Best Out of It

What makes some people be able to live through terrible situations and make the best out of it? 1216121440aMost of us will go through pain and grief in our lifetime. Loss of a loved one, a serious illness, hardships and financial loss will reach every one of us at one point or another. Whatever the situation is, as we grow old, we all have one or many reasons to experience grief and to mourn. And we are all conditioned by society and evolution to deal with pain in more or less the same fashion.

Most human beings will go through 4 of the 5 stages of loss, not all with the same intensity or in the same fashion, but we will experience denial, anger, bargaining and depression. The 5th one, acceptance is reserved for some, but not all of us. Some times death reaches us before we are able to accept that we will die, or sometimes we will get stuck in one of the previous stages, not allowing for a healthy healing.

When we get stuck and don’t allow for the next stage to arrive, or when we go repeatedly back and forth in between stage, we develop PTSD, that very prevalent disease that was first identified to recognize the changes in mood and terrible experiences, that in many cases last for a lifetime, which affected WWII veterans.

Doctors evaluated certain traits, as deep depression, flashbacks, and nightmares that would not go away. Feeling sorry for oneself and having a monothematic conversation, usually centered in one’s loss is what we commonly see it represented as. All the symptoms of PTSD are normal and are part of the healing process. What makes it a horrible disease is that the individual is not able to keep going, to let the grief develop and the energy flow

We know today that not only veterans acquire PTSD. Many people, and specially women, will develop the disease when they go through highly traumatic events. But not everyone will. Some individuals are able to, no matter how traumatized they are, recover, pick up the pieces and get going with their lives. What makes this individuals able to cope when others end up destroying whatever is left of their lives by drinking, doing drugs, or sleeping in to a terrible depression that will not allow them to have a fulfilling life ever again, or at least for a long time? What makes some individuals more suited to pick up the pieces and go?

Why me? And the immediate answer is why not? What makes me better than anybody else that is going thought the same things I have endured, and in many cases worse times? To me that is the break point, when we finally realize that we are not the center of the world, ad that other people hurt as much as we do if not more. Now we can start working with ourselves, Now we can get busy and use the three magical attitudes, gratitude, compassion and hope

Gratitude for being here, for having the insight, for having the problem so we can learn from it…

Compassion for yourself, for others, for the situation, for the world that we live…

Hope that it will get better, that we will learn from our situation, that we will be an example to others…

All these take us to action, to taking a proactive attitude and to get out of our head and in to doing something, whether it is to fix the problem at hand if possible or to cut our losses and make the best of the hand that life has dealt us. Right at this point we stop feeling sorry for ourselves and we realize that we are responsible for what has happened, although not at fault, and we take charge of our lives. We are not the victim any more. Instead we are the heroes of our own story, and whatever may happen we are victorious, as we have learned our lesson and we can moved on.

Please join Catherine and I for a discussion on how we deal with grief and getting back on your feet. Or dial (347) 637-3317 I hope to see you there